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Amateur Radio and Public Service

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    Public Service and Amateur Radio

           Public service has been around for a very long time. When amateur radio operators are not doing emergency communication for some disaster in the world some get bored and lose interest in helping their fellow man. Public service has been around for at least 75 years in amateur radio. This helps keep your radio skill sharp and ready when an emergency comes our way. Some ARES groups help their local law enforcement with traffic control on their yearly parade their community has each year. There duty may be standing at an intersection that the law enforcement needs some help on.

             The Buffalo Co. ARES helps their community each year with around 3 parades each fall of the year. The first one is the Band Day parade in September and UNK Home Coming parade in October. Our job is to help move the street barricade off the street when the parade is near that intersection and keep the general public from crossing the street when the parade is near. This will take 5 or 6 ARES members for each parade. Amateur radio has dependable radios for communication with the members that may be spread out over 6 blocks. I would suggest you use a simplex freq. Like 146.535 or 550 558. Keep off the regular freq. like .520 some one may need it and disrupted your communication for that alert. Repeaters don’t work well for short-range communications. Keep them open for the other operator and everyone don’t need to know what you are doing and want to jump in and talk to you when you are on alert. If a problem should arise, that ARES person calls the NCS or EC on the parade rout and they call the local police department and the officer takes care of the problem. In Kearney the general public has a great respect for the ARES members and the work we do for our community. We never have a problem working with the Kearney public or police department. It works very well and saves overtime pay for our city also and gives you experience working with the public. With the ARES operators in our area we get along very well, each organization knows what the other are doing and what we are capable of doing so no one gets into trouble doing there public service alert helping there community.

           If your ARES or amateur radio club hasn’t helped your community. I encourage your EC of your organization to get in contact with your local law enforcement and let them know your organization is around and what you can do.  You have the amateur radios that can do the job and the members. Tell next time 73’’ and enjoy amateur radio.

    Danny Baer
    ARES  EC

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